Laura Austin’s Solo Road Trip

Sometimes you just need to step away from your day-to-day life, forget about your obligations to the rest of world, and do something for yourself. Over New Years I decided to do just that and set out on a 5 day, 2337-mile road trip… by myself. Starting in Los Angeles, heading straight to New Mexico, and making stops in Arizona on my way back, it was just me and my camera exploring a part of the US I had never seen.

In a way, I guess this was a serious selfie mission since each place I stopped I was equipped with a tripod and a remote for my camera, making it possible to shoot photos of myself when there wasn’t anyone else around… like when I was sitting alone in my hotel room drinking from a bottle of whiskey when the clock struck midnight on New Years. I found myself alone in most situations because without having to cater to anyone else’s needs, I was able to venture into some of the most incredible places at odd times when the average tourist wasn’t meandering around… which was exactly the way I wanted it.

Many people asked me if I was lonely on this trip, going days without really interacting with anyone else. But it’s times like that when a person’s inner dialog runs wild and you can learn more about yourself than maybe you really wanted to. Without getting too sappy, there is something really liberating about being completely alone in vast, jaw-dropping landscapes. For example, getting out of bed at 4 in the morning, scrambling up an almost vertical rock face in near darkness, and sitting on the edge of a cliff to watch the sunrise just because you felt like it.

Laura Austin

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